Making Venetian Masks - Session 6 & 7

Session 6:

Now the fun began!  After each child had decided on the form of their mask it was time to start chopping!

I decided to use cane fibre papier mache masks. However, I wanted the children to have more creative freedom on the form their masks took, so I purchased the full masks.

If the children could they sketched out the shape of their mask onto the papier mache masks and I chopped the masks.  This was too dangerous for children to do.  I had to use a combination of scissors and a craft knife.

The original shaped mask (on the left), the shapes after they've been cut.

To avoid seeing the texture of the original masks the children applied a choice of materials.

What we used:
* Glue gun (hot glue gun)
* Layered Paper (like building up a collage effect)
Atelier Mouldling Compound

After the glue had dried each mask was coated with a good quality white acrylic paint.

Making Venetian Masks...Session Four & Five

Sessions Four & Five:

After viewing many different Venetian masks on Pinterest it was time for children to start exploring their own designs.  They sketched four possible shapes for their mask and varied the patterns and colours they could use.

Below are some of the final designs.  I scanned these in and emailed these to parents so they could help buy some of the embellishments, like the feather.

Making Venetian Masks - Sessions 1 - 3

This year my class are making Venetian inspired masks to be displayed at the Cultural Festival.

I set up a class Pinterest account and also used the Witch's Pinterest to pin a variety of Venetian Masks.  This worked brilliantly, all the inspiration was at their fingertips.

On the class Pinterest account we pinned a variety of half masks.  I decided to make half masks in the class as I thought this would be easier to manage.

Sessions One to Three:
The main focus was to get children really looking at Venetian masks.  They sketched their shape, colour, the patterns (the designs they saw), and noted down the types of embellishments used.

Exploring shape, patterns and colours.
To get the children to notice the patterns I projected a Venetian mask onto the whiteboard (using the data projector), and copied the patterns with a whiteboard pen.  I also made some cardboard templates to show the use of pattern.  This is also a great opportunity to talk about symmetrical patterns and rotation.

Making an eBook in the Classroom...

Ever wanted to make a ebook with the children in your class?

Well, here's the journey I went on.  I thought I'd start with some writing the children had already published in class - jellybean similes.

I went hunting on the internet and found a few ways of making ebooks.

ePubBud lets you create an eBook, convert a .doc into an eBook and you can even pay money and buy an ISBN.

Titatok - run by Barnes and Nobel lets you create your ebook and then order your book to print.

I first thought I'd try Apple's Pages as it lets you create .epub files.  I also found a couple of online tutorials detailing the steps.  Click here to view these tutorials

I tried 'Pages,' and discovered it wasn't going to work if I wanted each child to record their voice, reading their jellybean simile.  I just couldn't add multiple sound files in 'Pages,' as they jumped all over the page (excuse the pun).  I could have just converted a .doc into a pdf, but by doing this I wouldn't be able to have any sound files.  

Well, after experimenting with the above I found the answer right under my nose.... Book Creator, an app for the iPad.  This app does cost US $4.99 or NZ $6.49.

I had already taken digital photos of each child's work, so I just emailed these to my iCloud account.  I then saved them into my Camera roll on my iPad.  The interface on Book Creator is user friendly, so I got a group of children to insert each photo on to each page.  I gave them the responsibility of recording their voices.  This app has a 'Getting Started,' tutorial which shows you the basics.  I think there's lots of fun to be had with Book Creator.

Once your ebook is finished you can send it straight to iBooks (or Stanza as I also have this installed on the iPad), you can email it, or send your ebook to iTunes (ebook or pdf).

When our class ebook was finished I could have emailed the .epub file to parents.  However, I wanted the ebook to be uploaded and to be able to be accessed online.  I had a hard time finding anything on the web that could do this.

I found ePub Bud let you upload an .epub file and by changing the settings you could allow the file to be downloaded.  I did this and sent my parents the url address.  Once uploaded your ebook can also be read in a web browser, however because I had sound files this wasn't going to work.  At the time I didn't know this and emailed the support team to question why this button wasn't working. I got a very quick reply and the technician removed 'view in browser button,' so only the 'download button' was visible.  Click here to see our ebook 'Jellybean Similes.'

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